The History Truck

The Philadelphia History Truck Do you know about the Philadelphia History Truck?

In April, I had the opportunity to meet Erin Bernard, the creator, curator, and public historian of the Philadelphia History Truck at the National Council on Public History Conference in Nashville.

Like a food truck, the History Truck brings history to the people. Erin strives to tell the story of Philadelphia one neighborhood at a time. Her goal is to connect Philadelphians to their history and allow them to participate in the processes of museum work.

In this post, you will discover how the History Truck works and how you can support its efforts.


How the History Truck Works

Erin, her team, and truck operate in a 10-step cycle:

1. Partner with a neighborhood association

2. Build community relationships by participating in neighborhood activities

3. Facilitate 1:1 oral history interviews & host a storytelling block party featuring neighborhood memories and objects


4. History Truck staff conduct research to verify and contextualize oral histories about the community

5. Use the truck to transport and display an historically-based art exhibit in community green spaces

6. Hold meetings with community members to design a new exhibit about their community

7. Display the exhibit in a neighborhood space to help activate the cultural energy within the neighborhood and empower community members to see and use their neighborhood as a museum and art space

8. Host an exhibit opening that celebrates the artists within the community who helped to make the exhibit

9. Downsize the exhibit and use the truck to transport it across Philadelphia for display in other neighborhoods as a means of connecting neighborhoods with the community message

10. Select a new neighborhood. Start the cycle again


Tonight, June 19, 2015, the Philadelphia History Truck will host its second-annual community exhibit: They Say They Gonna Build, an exhibit that explores university expansion and community building in North Philadelphia.



Erin has proven that the History Truck model works.

She has enabled residents in two Philadelphia neighborhoods to connect with their past and participate in conveying their history to their fellow Philadelphians. However, like digital history projects, the work of the History Truck requires time, manpower, and funding to keep going.

In fact, the Philadelphia History Truck project needs a new truck!

For the past two years, Erin and her team have borrowed a truck while they demonstrated that the "History Truck" model of community-based history works. Now the project needs a new truck that will provide it with a permanent home.

Please consider supporting this endeavor. You can find more information about the History Truck and its Indiegogo campaign by clicking on the appropriate links.


Museums & Historic Sites of Bavaria, Germany

bavaria-mapHave you ever been to Munich? Three weeks ago, Tim asked if I wanted to accompany him on his business trip to Munich. Having never been to Germany, I said “YES!"

In this post, you will discover some of the historic sites and museums I have visited while in Munich and the German state of Bavaria.

There will be a forthcoming post about my trip to the Dachau concentration camp. I need some time to digest what I saw and discovered there.


Museum of Egyptian Art (Staatliches Museum Ägyptischer Kunst)

Munich blends the past with present-day technologies in its new Egyptian Art Museum.

Multi-lingual touchscreen computers at the center of each room guide visitors through the museum and its collections, which span 5,000 years of art history. These tablets provide historical context for the artwork on display as well as additional information about the pieces in each room.

Egyptian Art Museum MunichThe most interesting part of this museum was its focus on the creation of Egyptian art.

I have seen many Egyptian artifacts and exhibits in art museums, but I do not recall the emphasis or detailed information about how the artists who lived in each dynasty created their artwork.

In my opinion, the best exhibit was on how Egyptian artists created their cubic art; the large statues we see inside and outside of temples are part of an art form called Egyptian cubism. The exhibit showed small models with lines on them that represented the areas the artist would cut in each phase of his work.


Deutsches Museum

The Deutsches Museum stands as one of the largest science and technology museums in the world. It consists of three branches: a main branch and two branches that contain extensive automobile and airplane collections.

Tim and I visited the main branch, which reminded me of the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum, but with more how-to information about how the technologies on display work(ed).

Deutsches MuseumWe spent four hours or so in the Deutsches Museum and we covered only a fraction of its 11 acres, or 10 miles, of exhibit space.

Tim enjoyed the electrical experiments area the most. The live demonstration of high-voltage apparatus made for a good, if loud, show.

I found the exhibits about the history of the printing press and bookbinding technology the most enjoyable. The evolution of telecommunications exhibit came in a close second because it explained how telephone switchboards and exchanges work(ed).


“Mad" King Ludwig’s Castles


King Ludwig IIKing Ludwig II, the "Mad" King

In 1866, Bavaria entered a war against Prussia and lost. As a result, King Ludwig II saw his power diminish. Prussia took over command of the Bavarian army and Ludwig II lost his sovereignty as a ruler.

Between 1867 and his death in 1886, Ludwig II coped with his loss of power by building a series of castles and palaces that formed a kingdom where he would be the supreme ruler.

Ludwig II’s building projects placed Bavaria in great debt. By 1885, Ludwig II owed 14 million marks. Rather than curb his lavish lifestyle and building projects, Ludwig II continued to plan and build.

On June 12, 1886, a government commission had Ludwig II arrested on charges that he was unfit for rule by reason of insanity. Government officers took Ludwig II to Berg Castle on the shores of Lake Starnberg.

On June 13, Ludwig II and a Dr. Bernhard von Gudden, the chief physican at the Munich Asylum, went for a walk and never returned. A search party found Gudden and King Ludwig II floating in Lake Starnberg. No one knows what happened and whether they suffered from an accident or were the victims of murder.

Tim and I booked a day trip to see two of “Mad” King Ludwig II's Alpine retreats: Linderhof Palace and Neuschwanstein Castle.


Linderhof Palace

In 1869, King Ludwig II decided to turn his father Maximilian II’s hunter's lodge into a palace. Ludwig II modeled his new residence after Versailles as he greatly admired his distant relative King Louis XIV of France.

The rooms contain elaborate and ornate furnishings. Gold and silver gilding, large mirrors, giant porcelain chandeliers, and ornate furniture decorate each of the 10 rooms. You can visit all of these rooms and see their lavish ornamentation in the virtual tour.

Linderhof Palace

Neuschwanstein Castle

King Ludwig II never intended for anyone outside of his inner circle to visit his palaces and castles and yet today Neuschwanstein is one of the most visited castles in the world.

Construction of Neuschwanstein began on September 5, 1869. It was never finished.

King Ludwig II moved into the partially completed castle in 1884, but construction continued only until his death in 1886.

The Bavarian government ordered the workers to add a roof to the unfinished portions of the castle and opened the building to tourists shortly afterward.

Each room of Neuschwanstein Castle features a mythological tale, which the furniture and paintings in the room help tell.

The castle has a very medieval look, but a modern feel. If you look closely you will see bells and ringers for servants, indoor plumbing, and heating stoves.

Unfortunately, the Bavarian government does not allow visitors to take photographs inside either Linderhof or Neuschwanstein. If you are interested, they offer a virtual tour of the castle.

Liz at Neuschwanstein Castle

Residenz Museum

The Residenz once stood as the center of power for the Wittelsbach Family. The Wittelsbachs ruled Bavaria as Dukes (1180-1623), Electors (1623-1806), and Kings (1806-1918).

The Residenz began as Stephen III's Neuveste, a crude castle with a moat surrounding it in 1385. In 1550, the Residenz began to take on its modern appearance. Duke Albrecht V added the Antiquarium hall and ballroom (1568-1571). Duke Wilhelm V added the Grottonhof buildings, which resemble an Italian grotto (1581-1586). Every Duke, Elector, and King of Bavaria added on to the Residenz until King Ludwig I (1824-1848).

As a result of its multi-generational construction, the Residenz contains representations of Baroque, Rococo, and neoclassical art, furnishings, and style.

The Residenz contains hundreds of rooms; you can visit 90 of them during your visit.

The Residenz

The opulence of the Wittelsbach Family is impressive; each room contains pieces of furniture, textiles, dinnerware, religious relics, and artwork owned by the family. However, what I found most interesting is how the Bavarians have reconstructed and interpreted the museum.

The allied air raids of March 1944 destroyed almost all of the Residenz. After the war the people of Munich opted to rebuild its historic buildings as close to the originals as possible. As a result the city looks old, but feels modern.

A tour of the Residenz includes a free audio guide. As you walk through each of the 90 rooms the narrators make sure to point out what part of the room and its furnishings are original and what are reproduction.

Thankfully, the people of Munich were able to save many furnishings and much of the priceless art before the allied bombing commenced. The curators of the museum have used the original furnishings in each room whenever possible. Other rooms contain Wittelsbach Family pieces from elsewhere in Europe or reproductions.

Museum curators also provide visual cues that visitors have entered a reconstructed area of the palace. Instead of real stone and brick, the curators have restored exterior and interior walls with plain, white walls, or (in the case of the exterior) walls painted to look like stone blocks and bricks.

The Residenz is an impressive museum and one that may best be visited over a few days.



German FoodI have enjoyed my time in Munich and Bavaria. I have seen many interesting buildings and museums, discovered a history far different from the one I study, and I have really enjoyed sampling the culinary tastes of the region.

Bavarian pretzels are cheap and plentiful and I never knew that so many different kinds of sausage, streusel, and doughnuts existed.


Share Your Story

Where will you visit on your next research trip or vacation?


*Interior photos of Linderhof Palace courtesy of the Bayerische Schlösserverwaltung.

5 Ways Public History Institutions Can Use Google Glass

Google GlassOn Thursday, July 17, 2014, I brought Google Glass to the Library Company of Philadelphia at the invitation of its Director, Richard Newman. Our mission: To find out how public history institutions can use Google Glass to enhance and broaden their outreach.

We experimented with Glass for four hours.

In this post you will discover our experiments with Google Glass and the five ways we think public history institutions can use Glass to innovate history interpretation and increase outreach with virtual visitors and school groups.


5 Ways Public History Institutions Can Use Google Glass

After a brief tutorial on how to use Glass, Rich and Nicole Scalessa (IT Manager & Reference Librarian) took staff members around the Library Company to find out how their institution could use Glass to offer visitors a behind-the-scenes look at the Library Company and its holdings.


1. Exhibition Previews

Our first stop took place in the Library Company’s exhibition space.

The Library Company's exhibition “That’s So Gay: Outing Early America" featured panels and cases describing the history of homosexuality and its portrayal in early America.

Rich had a staff member don Glass and follow him around the exhibition space. Periodically, Rich stopped around the exhibit and offered commentary about the panels and objects he and his staff member were looking at.

Rich and Nicole believe that videos taken with Glass offer the Library Company an additional way to present information about their exhibit to virtual visitors. They speculated that they could use this video in conjunction with a blog post that explains the exhibit. Both forms of media would express the same information, but visitors would have a choice in how they want to discover more about the Library Company's exhibitions: print or video.

2. Conservation Demonstrations

As the caretaker of over half a million rare books, manuscripts, pamphlets, and graphics, the Library Company of Philadelphia has an in-house conservation team and a book bindery.

Library Company of PhiladelphiaOne of our experiments took place in the book bindery.

Rich asked one of the book binders if they would wear Glass and provide an explanation of how she helps take care of rare books. The book binder spent the next 10-15 minutes discussing a new technique she used to repair an old English binding.

The book bindery video revealed that Glass videos offer a more personal touch than videos taken with a traditional video camera.

Google Glass takes videos of what you see as you are seeing it; video cameras capture the same footage, but from a less personal vantage point.

The book binder’s video offers visitors the opportunity to feel like the conservator is conducting an one-on-one tutorial of her binding repair technique.

This finding prompted Rich and Nicole to wonder if the Library Company might use Glass to create not only interesting behind-the-scenes footage of the Library Company, but also to create series of informational tutorials that would appeal to different types of visitors; guests who may not know anything about the Library Company vs. those who want to know more about the inner workings of the institution.

The experiment also made me wonder: could an institution such as the Library Company use the intimate way Google Glass captures video to create a series of conservation videos or live demonstrations that they could sell to raise funds to support such work?


3. Intimate Collection Commentary

Rich and Nicole continued to experiment with the intimacy of Google Glass videos.

In another experiment they asked Librarian James N. Green to show and describe one of the Library Company's more recent acquisitions: an early directory of London called The History of London from the Foundations of the Romans to the Present Time.

Jim donned Glass and discussed the significance of the directory. He spoke for 15-20 minutes and in that time imparted valuable information.

Historians use city directories to learn about the people, places, buildings, jobs, and governance of a city in times past. The Library Company's copy of this early London directory is unique in that it is not only a first edition, but its owner (one of Benjamin Franklin's book dealers) wrote commentary about the people, places, architectural styles, and important events described by the directory in the margins around the entries.

Jim equated the directory and its contents as a Facebook-like timeline of the owner's life. For example, near the entry of the great plague, the owner described the experiences of one of his relatives during that dark and troubled time. He also added information about people, places, and events when he felt entries lacked sufficient detail.

Jim's tutorial on the London directory was engaging and informative. Anyone who views his video will feel as though they are standing next to Jim and yet seeing the book as he sees it.

At some point the Library Company may opt to use Jim's video to highlight their acquisition. They could use the video on their website to inform visitors about Library Company's holdings.

They could also include the video in one of their e-mail newsletters and use it as a special thank you to members and donors whose support made the acquisition of the directory possible.


VIP-Pass4. Behind-the-Scenes Tour

Our last experiment with Glass involved a trip to the basement.

The Library Company has one of the oldest, if not the oldest, library card catalogs in the United States. Rich, Nicole, and I took Glass to visit this historic artifact.

Nicole wore Glass and filmed our explorations through the card catalog. We marveled at the sheer size of the catalog and debated its date by the handwriting on the cards.

We explored the catalog as an exercise in how the Library Company and other public history institutions can use Google Glass to offer additional behind-the-scenes content to its visitors and members. The historic card catalog resides in a staff-only area.


5. Live Stream Videos

Although we limited our experiments to video, we did not limit our ideas.

The three of us speculated how the Library Company could use the forthcoming Google Hangouts video conference app to live stream library tours and exhibitions into classrooms.

The ability to live stream video from Glass would open the doors of the Library Company to more than just local school groups.

I also imagine that librarians and archivists could use this app to offer specialized reference help.

When a researcher inquires about a particular manuscript or book, the librarian could pull the book or manuscript and use Glass to offer a live stream of the item to the researcher. The librarian and researcher could then have a live conversation about the book or manuscript while looking at it.

There is no date on when Google will reissue its updated and enhanced Hangouts app for Glass, but possibilities abound for how it will enable institutions like the Library Company to enhance in-person and virtual visitor/researcher experiences and interactions with their institution.



I left the Library Company impressed with Rich and Nicole’s ideas for how public history institutions and museums could use Google Glass to promote their work and enhance (and increase) visitor experiences with their institution.

I had considered how museums might use Google Glass prior my visit, but my early thoughts dealt only with enhancing the way visitors could view exhibits; Glass could help visitors focus on an object instead of the text placard below it.

I imagine this would work similar to QR codes, visitors would scan a code on the object case or placard which would call the information panel into their Glass view screen. Visitors could then look at the object while reading about it.

However, Rich and Nicole have shown me that Google Glass offers public history institutions many different ways that they can enhance visitor interaction and experiences with their institutions.


What Do You Think?

What do you think about the possibilities that Rich and Nicole experimented with?

Can you think of other ways public history institutions could use Google Glass to broaden their visitor outreach and/or enhance their historical interpretation?


"A Day with Google Glass" by The Library Company of Philadelphia

 Montage courtesy of The Library Company's Youtube Channel


Luzern and a Novel Approach to History Interpretation

IMAGE_2037On Sunday, August 24, 2014, Tim and I toured the city of Luzern, Switzerland. Situated on the edge of the Vierwaldstättersee (Lake Luzern), with a panoramic view of the Alps, Luzern stands as the tourism capital of Switzerland.

Luzern used to be on the “Grand Tour” route of all persons making their way through Europe in the 18th and 19th centuries.


Brief History of Luzern

The history of Luzern dates back to about 750 when a group of Benedictine monks founded the Monastery of St. Leodegar. A fishing village grew around the monastery.

Luzern had become as a bustling trade center by the 13th century. The village sat amid the Gotthard Pass trade route and many traders passed through and settled in Luzern as a result.

King Rudolph I von Habsburg brought Luzern and Switzerland under his rule in 1290. Unhappy with Habsburg rule, Luzern joined three other Swiss cantons (similar to counties) and formed the “eternal” Swiss Confederacy known as the Eidgenossenschaft in 1332. Three other cantons joined this alliance and together they pulled free of Austrian rule in 1386.

The Swiss Confederacy lasted until around 1520. While most of the other cantons became Protestant, Luzern remained mostly Catholic.

The Swiss saw a change in governance again in 1798 when Napoleon marched into Switzerland; the French brought democracy to the country.



Chapel BridgeThe Kapellbrücke or Chapel Bridge stands as one of the most iconic sites in Luzern.

Built during the first half of the 14th century, the bridge connected the town’s medieval fortifications. It also stood as a defensive structure. Built at an angle, the “window” openings facing the lake are smaller than its inland facing windows. The smaller openings provided defenders with more cover.

Next to the bridge stands the Wasserturm or Water Tower, which the people of Luzern built around 1300.

During the 17th century, artists decorated the bridge with paintings that depicted the history of the town as well as two patron saints.

The bridge you see and walk on today is not 100% original. In 1993, a pleasure boat moored under the bridge caught fire and set the bridge ablaze. The people of Luzern rebuilt the fire-damaged sections of the bridge, but they could not replace the paintings the fire destroyed. Therefore, only a few of the 17th-century paintings remain.


Reuss River Weir System

Luzern sits at the place where the Reuss River flows out of Lake Luzern on its way into the Rhine.

Lake Luzern receives most of its water from snowmelt. Therefore, the lake can fluctuate in depth depending upon how much rain north-central Switzerland receives and how fast the winter snow melts off the nearby Alps.

Prior to the 19th century, lakeside towns experienced flooding when lots of rain or fast melting snow flooded the lake. In the 19th century, the people of Luzern devised an extendable dam called the Nadelwehr or Spiked Weir, that allows them to maintain the water level of the lake by controlling its flow into the Reuss.

Each spring, the weir operators remove spikes from the weir to increase the flow of water out of Lake Luzern. When the water level of the lake drops in the summer, they replace the spikes to slow its flow into the Reuss. The weir operators close the weir entirely during the winter months to keep the water level high enough for the boats that ply the lake.

The Weir


Mill BridgeLike the Chapel Bridge, the wooden Spreuerbrücke (known in English as the Mill Bridge) dates back to the 13th century. “Spreu” manes chaff and this bridge connected the town to its mills.

As many as 10 mills used to line the edge of the Reuss River.

Artists in the 17th century also decorated the Mill Bridge with paintings, all of which are visible overhead as you walk across the bridge. When you reach the halfway point you will find a little chapel, which the town built during the 16th century.

Today, volunteers decorate the chapel according to the season.


The Depot History Museum and its Novel History Interpretation Method

After Tim and I walked across the bridges and along the Reuss we visited the Historisches Museum of Luzern.

The museum is located in one of the oldest buildings in Luzern and it bears the nickname “The Depot” as the townspeople have placed all of their historical odds and ends inside of it.

Walking into the museum feels like walking into a warehouse. Spread out over three floors, the Depot displays its massive collections of paintings, toys, clothing, clocks, weapons, coins, pottery, and even toilets on industrial shelving units protected with glass or chicken-wire enclosures.

Given the sheer size and depth of this collection, the Depot provides each visitor with a barcode scanner. Each item within its collection has a barcode. When you come to an item you want to learn about, you scan the barcode and information about the object appears on your handheld scanner.

IMAGE_2039Upon presenting you with your scanner, the museum docent presents you with two options for how to view the museum's collections: 1. Walk around the museum on your own and scan objects that interests you. 2. Scan one of the blue tags before you head upstairs and have the scanner guide you through a themed tour of its collections.

Initially, Tim and I attempted the first option, we scanned any item that piqued our interest. However, we became overwhelmed before we reached the first floor.

Few of the objects we scanned shared a relationship with one another. Not being well-versed in the history of Switzerland we lacked the context needed to place the disparate items we scanned in our minds or to connect them with one another.

Within 5-10 minutes we gave up our self-guided approach and returned to the ground floor to select a themed tour.

The museum presented several different themed tour options. One tour offered to guide visitors through items related to maps and geography. Another offered a medieval archaeological tour. Tim and I picked the “Lust & Vice” tour.

Our scanner directed us to objects that fit within the theme of “Lust & Vice.” Each time we scanned a blue tag associated with our tour a bit of narrative appeared on our scanner screens. These narratives provided us with the historical context that we had missed during our initial do-it-ourselves approach. For example, in front of a shelf filled with different playing cards our scanners informed us that “the vice of card-playing was widespread among soldiers. Many who survived battles became addicted to gambling.”

With that said, some of the narratives stretched an object's relationship to the theme of “Lust & Vice." One tag led us to a display of different police caps. The blurb on our screens informed us that although police caps changed in style over time they always projected a "racy style" or something to that effect.

I applaud the museum curator's efforts at trying to explain and connect the Depot's bric-a-brac. Although the narratives on the “Lust & Vice” tour sometimes left me wanting more information, or scratching my head as to how certain objects had made this themed tour, the connections the scanner made between the objects proved a valiant effort to help visitors make sense of the hodgepodge collection.



Depot MuseumThe Historisches Museum of Luzern is the first place where I have encountered a total reliance on a barcode scanner system of interpretation. I have seen other museums place QR codes on exhibit panels that allow visitors to receive additional information about the object through their smartphones.

After my visit to the Depot, I thought about how much I enjoyed being able to select how I wanted to learn about the museum’s collections. The plethora of proffered tours allowed me to choose my own museum adventure.

The feeling and freedom involved in choosing how I wanted to learn about the history of Luzern made my experience more fun. It also ensured that I chose a topic that interested me.

Additionally, the use of scanners made the tour more fun. After I finished reading about one group of objects, my scanner told me which tag I needed to look for next. This instruction provided a treasure hunt-like experience. Not to mention, that the act of scanning the tags provided a certain amount of fun too. My observations of the other museum visitors told me that they felt the same way, especially the kids who raced around the museum’s three floors in search of their next tag.

I would love to see more museums in the United States (and elsewhere) adopt Luzern’s “create-your-own-adventure” approach. However, this approach really needs to include themed tour options that will guide visitors through the ways they can connect the various objects to each other and to the larger interpretive themes of the museum.

I believe that the interpretive model offered in Luzern would appeal to museums that are looking to attract more visitors. In our age of flashy technological gadgets and shortened attention spans, the “choose-your-own-adventure” model offers a fantastic approach that well suits our present-day culture.


ThoughtfulManWhat Do You Think?

What do you think about the “choose-your-own-adventure” model of museum interpretation? Have you seen it applied anywhere else?


Summer Challenge: Local List

Summer on a beachI would not call myself a procrastinator and yet I have a list of museums, events, and historic sites that I have put off visiting. Why?

My brain tells me that I can visit them anytime because I live nearby.

The problem with this mentality is, “anytime” rarely comes along: the weather is bad, too nice, I’m tired, I would rather stretch across the couch with a good book, or something better has come along. I have used all of these excuses.

Not this summer.

Now that the unofficial start of summer has come, I am making a commitment to cross at least 3-5 items off my “Local List.”

Will you take this challenge with me?

In this post: You will learn what a "local list" is and receive a bit of motivation to cross items off your list this summer.


What is a Local List

A “Local List” is a list of events, museums, historic sites, or experiences that you put off visiting or doing because you either live close by or have special access to them and therefore you could do them “anytime.”

BunkerHillFor example, when I worked as an interpretive ranger for the Boston National Historical Park it used to astonish me how many Charlestown residents had never been inside the Bunker Hill Monument.

Each year, I would welcome at least 5-6 visitors who lived around Monument Square, or just a few blocks away, but they had never visited. And I am not talking about people who just moved into the neighborhood. I am talking about people who had lived around the monument for 5+ years.

I once had a visitor who told me that they had lived in the neighborhood for 32 years and that this was his first visit.

What brought these locals in?

Sometimes curiosity, but mostly out-of-town family.

I used to be astonished. I would think “how could you live so close, for so long, and yet never have taken the time to visit this important site before today?!”

Years later, I realize that I am guilty of the same procrastination.

There are several places that I have never visited because I think to myself “I can go anytime, there’s no rush.”


Things to DoWhat’s On My Local List?

So what museums, events, historic sites, and experiences have I put off? What is on my “Local List?”

In no particular order: • Dorchester Heights MonumentBoston African American National Historic Site and Black Heritage TrailAnnual Lexington and Concord Re-enactmentIsaac Royall HouseMary Baker Eddy Library MappariumCastle IslandSam Adams Brewery TourBattleship CovePlimouth PlantationThe Boston Tea Party Ships & MuseumFenway Park TourPeabody Essex MuseumSalem, MassachusettsSpringfield Armory National Historic SiteJFK BirthplaceFrederick Law Olmsted National Historic SiteGibson House MuseumNichols House MuseumOtis House MuseumLongfellow House Washington’s Headquarters National Historic Site • Saugus Iron Works National Historic SiteNewport, Rhode IslandNew Bedford Whaling National Historic Park

And those are just the 23 places that I can think of off the top of my head.


challenge yourselfSummer Challenge

This summer I am going to check 3-5 items off of my local list.

I challenge you to do the same.

Draw up your “Local List” and commit some time this summer to visiting the sites on it.

I will begin my quest on Saturday May 31, 2014. I have made plans to take a tour of the Sam Adams Brewery with friends.


Uncle_SamTake the Local List Challenge

What sites, museums, and experiences are on your “Local List?”

How many sites will you commit to checking off of it this summer?

Leave a comment or tweet with #LocalList so we can motivate each other to connect with history and experience the life and culture around us.